Sunday, December 9, 2012

Thanksgiving Weekend

Cena Family-John, me Sophia, Lilliana, Ashley, Alfonzo, Emma
This year for Thanksgiving, Johnny and I decided to stay in Morgantown and not venture down to the North Carolina beach like last year.  In the morning, I went running and John played ward football.  The day was so beautiful, we decided to play a little singles tennis prior to our Thanksgiving feast.  Our wonderful friends the Cena's invited us over, along with a few other families.  The food was outstanding and there was plenty of it.  I think my favorite had to be the artichoke dip with cheese...I could not stop eating it.  The pumpkin pie, of course was divine, as was the turkey.

Friday afternoon we took a short trip to Washington DC.  We were both wanting to attend the temple and did.  We then turned John's subaru into a 'luxurious' place to sleep:)  We had previously removed the mattress off of our futon and put down the seats to create quite a large sleeping space.  Johnny had then put together a delicious dinner of turkey sandwiches, vegetables, and fruit.  We ate a 'picnic' dinner then got ready for bed and watched Home Alone on the laptop.  We parked in the neighborhood surrounding the temple and actually had a beautiful view of the temple.  It was so cold, the windows fogged up fast enough, so no one would notice two people watching a movie in the back of the car.  Overall, it was quite an adventure!

outside National Cathedral
Saturday morning we met up with our friend Mike Barber and went to Arlington Cemetery.  I learned that a descendent of George Washington married Robert E. Lee, the famous general in the Confederate Army.  Arlington Cemetery had a somber feel and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier was fascinating.  I was starving, so we headed to a restaurant I had been craving for months- Cafe Rio.  After that, we went to the National Cathedral and were able to see a great view of DC from the top.  Our trip would not be complete without going to National Botanical Gardens.  The giant greenhouse had plants of every species and smelled amazing.  I felt like I was a character in the movie 'Jumanji' when the entire house is over-run with plant life.  Overall, it was a successful trip and always good to meet up with old friends.
John trying to blend in with his surroundings

'No shave November' both trying to grow beards

Parents come to visit!

My lovely parents came to visit us on Halloween.  It may have not been the best timing because hurricane Sandy had just hit New York a couple days before and the aftermath in West Virginia was severe cold and snow.  I was hoping the beautiful east coast fall would still be around, but hurricane Sandy blew away any remaining autumn color.  However, we still found many fun things to do.
Halloween night we all went to dinner, then Johnny had to study so I stayed up until around 2am just chatting with my parents.
Thursday morning we headed to OhioPyle National Park.  We were probably the only people up there, but we still went on a hike in the heavy rainfall, and ate at the most delicious little sandwich shop.  That afternoon, we had Johnny show my parents around the WVU facilities, including the hospital. 
My dad had a dental conference Friday morning, so mom and I got to go shopping.  I took her to the infamous Gabe's, which is a just have to look kind of hard.  We then had a lovely lunch of talking and eating the most delicious french fries at Chiles.  In the afternoon, Johnny had finished his tests and my dad's conference was over.  We then visiting a Morgantown local restaurant and ate the infamous pizza known as 'Fire on the Mountain-' IT WAS AMAZING!
Saturday we ate a good breakfast.  Johnny and my dad went golfing (both were wearing parkas and gloves.)  Then we showed them what Morgantown is all about by taking them to a WVU football game.

Sadly, the Mountaineers lost by one, but it made for a good game.  It was extremely cold, but we were surrounded by so many 'spirited' fans it didn't seem that cold.  The traffic was crazy so we decided just to walk up the street from our apartment to Applebees. 

Sunday was church and a historical visit to Friendship Hill.  We toured the old house and then went on a short hike on one of the many trails surrounding the house, due to the extreme cold.  My parents left that evening.  I love when people come to visit!

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Bridge Day and the Tooth Fairy

So...I had to convince John to drive 2 hours south to visit the New River Gorge for the infamous 'Bridge Day.'  We had never been to New River Gorge and actually hope to return to white-water raft and zip line, but our single purpose for going was to watch individuals base jump on a built structure.
Basically, 'Bridge Day' consists of hundreds of people standing on the New River Gorge bridge watching insanely brave (or stupid) people jump of a platform.  John and I slowly worked our way closer and closer to the platform to get front-row seats.
I learned you had to have jumped at least 1000 times to be considered a good enough base jumper on bridge day.  After a while of watching, John and I, began to notice the more experienced jumpers from the less experienced jumpers.  Those who seemed less experienced (or smarter in my opinion) jumped off holding their folded up parachute so all they had to do was let it go at the right moment.  Other, more experienced jumpers, waited until the possible last second to open their parachute.
I was standing next to a nice old woman who kept saying, 'oh, he is not going to make it,' or 'yep he is hitting the rock,' encouraging things like that:)  I will have to admit that the jumpers who opened their chute at the last possible moment, or did flips and gainers off the platform were more fun to watch.
After bridge day, John made me promise to one day base jump with him.  I told him if I get really old and am on my death bed, I will go base jumping.  Most likely in my nightgown:)

This is the beautiful rainbow we saw on our way home from New River Gorge

On to Halloween!  We had to chance to attend a 'Harry Potter Halloween.'  I tried to make the famous bread spider my mom uses creates for the Squires Halloween Fondue Dinner, and I must say he worked out pretty well.  Unfortunately, I remembered to get a picture mid-dinner, so some of the legs had already been amputated.  For costumes, I deliberated for a couple days as to what to be.  John just commented with no spandex or tight attire.  In the end, I was the tooth fairy and he was a molar.  I thought our costume very original and clever (mostly because of my profession.)  However, there was another tooth fairy in attendance at the party and her spouse was a toothbrush.  All in all it was a 'magical' party filled with spells, trivia, and really good English food.   

Sunday, September 9, 2012


Now that we are starting our second year of med school, we are finally starting to get some visitors.  My siostra, Sarah, came out to visit for Labor Day weekend.  The original plan was white water rafting, but after finding out she was pregnant, that was not an option.  Sarah's West Virginia adventure began with shopping at the beloved Gabe's.  A store very similar to "TJ Maxx," but cheaper.  We then hiked around Cooper's Rock and went to the look out with Johnny, once he had completed his test.

The overlook was beautiful.  You don't know it, but Johnny and I are standing on a fallen tree about 10 feet off the ground.  I was a little nervous, but John was very calm.  That evening we took Sarah to the Morgantown Brewery.  The food was amazing!  Sarah ordered some delicious 'Fish and Chips' which was exactly what the baby was craving.  She had felt sick a little earlier, but the greasy food for some reason calmed her stomach.
Saturday morning began with loud music around 7:30 am.  There was a WVU football game and Sarah got to experience first hand the tail-gating atmosphere.  We then went on a 6 mile walk on the rail-trails.  Next we ventured to Laural Caverns in PA.  (fyi caverns is not the plural for caves).  We had a very 'enthusiastic' tour guide.  Our evening ended with a swim in Cheat Lake.  John jumped out of a tree about 40 feet in the air and I went off the rope swing and almost forgot to let go.  Sarah enjoyed a relaxing swim and then John and I pulled her around on the floaty.
Sunday consisted of church, Sarah subbed for Primary.  In our ward we really like to put our visitors to work:)  Then dinner, relaxing and game-night with the neighbors.
Labor Day came too quickly which meant Sarah was going home.  We drove to Pittsburgh, stopping at Rita's so Sarah could experience "tasty sensation."

We then went shopping on the 'strip district.'  There were several shops and fruit stand along the way.  Sarah and decided to purchase matching belts.  Next was lunch and Primanti Brothers.  A famous restaurant in Pittsburgh.  The sandwich consisted of sourdough bread, cole slaw, french fries, vinegar and tomatoes.  At first glance it may not look like much, but Sarah and I barely spoke a word as we devoured our sandwiches.

Lastly, we road up the trolley cart on the hillside to a beautiful view of Pittsburgh.  From an aerial view, Pittsburgh is a very stunning city with all the steal bridges and Ohio River.

We ended the day with a walk.  Then sat in a park and chatted for a few hours.  As I drove Sarah to the airport, I tried to keep my emotions at bay, but couldn't.  As I hugged her and said good-bye, I started to cry.  I decided I hate good-byes.  Thanks for coming Siostra, I sure do love ya!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Journey out WEST!

Johnny and I had been looking forward to seeing our families back in the great state of Utah for sometime.  Thursday morning around 3am we had a chance to catch a ride with the Turner's to the Pittsburgh airport.  My sister picked us up and she and I were off for a day full of pampering.  John went golfing with his parents.
That night we went to our favorite restaurant of all time...Cafe Rio and then off course to the delicious Nielson's Frozen Custard.

The day was a special Squires family temple day then straight up to the cabin.  We rode four-wheelers and motorcyles.  Then of course shot a lot of guns.  Friday evening my wonderful mother had a small family devotional where everyone who went on their mission told a little bit about it-I learned a lot!

We had a family competition of dart-throwing and ping-pong.  Mama Squires also made her infamous barbequed chicken!

That Sunday, I had the opportunity to watch my little nephew Emmett get blessed.  We then went to Lizzy's house for a delicious Sunday dinner.  It was wonderful to be with my sisters.

The entire next week was BEACH TIME at Carlsbad, CA.  The Lattins picked us up from my parents home and off we were to the SLC airport once again.

We arrived in sunny San Diego and drove to Carlsbad to the Beach Terrace Inn to meet up with all the other Lattin siblings and families.

We spent the next five days playing in the waves, sitting on the beach and chatting, eating delicious food and having inspiring evening devotionals.

Josh digging a sand pit

Every other year the Lattin family gets a huge family picture.  John and I were warming up for the pictures by taking a couple of our own.

The picture to the left is my nephew Andrew.  I have never met someone with so much personality!
It was extremely fun to get to chat with everyone and get to know my Johnny's family much much better!  I can't wait until the next Lattin beach trip in 2014!

Saturday we journeyed home to Salt Lake.  We then had the chance to spend two more days with my family full of shopping, going out to eat, and playing my parents favorite card game 'Hand and Foot.'  I love the West, but love the opportunity to live in the East...."country road, take me home!"